Indonesia Becomes Fifth To File WTO Case Against Australia Tobacco Plain-Packaging 22/09/2013 by Intellectual Property Watch 3 Comments Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Indonesia has become the fifth country to initiate dispute settlement procedures at the World Trade Organization challenging an Australian public health law requiring tobacco products to be sold in plain packages as a way to discourage their use. Indonesia notified the WTO on 20 September of its request for consultations with Australia over the law, the first step in a WTO dispute settlement case. The other cases were brought by Ukraine, Honduras, Dominican Republic and Cuba. A key aspect of the cases is possible violation of trademark rights. In its request, Indonesia said the tobacco measures “appear to be inconsistent with Australia’s obligations” under the WTO Technical Barriers to Trade Agreement (TBT), the Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) and the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) 1994, according to WTO sources. The document is DS467 and more information will be available soon on the WTO website. On timeline, the WTO said: “Response to the request has to be given within 10 days and the Member requested shall enter into consultations within a maximum of 30 days after the date of the receipt of the request. The maximum period of consultations is 60 days after the reception of the request, unless both parties agree otherwise.” If consultations do not settle the matter, the complainant my request a dispute panel. Here is the status of the five cases on Australia tobacco plain packaging, from WTO: Australia – Certain Measures Concerning Trademarks, Geographical Indications and other Plain Packaging Requirements applicable to Tobacco Products and Packaging. DS434 – Complaint by Ukraine. Request for consultations submitted on 13 March 2012. First panel request: 31 August 2012 (rejected by Australia) Second panel request/panel established: 28 September 2012 A meeting was held to discuss the panellist criteria in November 2012 but Ukraine requested the suspension of a panel composition. In August 2013 Ukraine reactivated the panel composition and a new meeting was held earlier this month. The panel has not been composed yet. DS435 – Complaint by Honduras. Request for consultations submitted on 4 April 2012 First panel request: 16 November 2012 (rejected by Australia) Second panel request/panel expected to be established: 25 September 2013 DS441 – Complaint by Dominican Republic. Request for consultations submitted on 18 July 2012 First panel request: 17 December 2012 (rejected by Australia) DS458 – Complaint by Cuba. Request for consultations submitted on 3 May 2013 DS467 – Complaint by Indonesia Request for consultations submitted on 20 September 2013. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Related "Indonesia Becomes Fifth To File WTO Case Against Australia Tobacco Plain-Packaging" by Intellectual Property Watch is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.